Frederick Nathaniel ‘Toots’ Hibbert, a Jamaican reggae singer, has passed on at 77.

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Toots & Maytals, a band he had fronted, confirmed the tragic news in a statement on its official Twitter handle.

The band said he breathed his last on Friday night at the university hospital of the West Indies in Kingston.

“It is with the heaviest of hearts to announce that Frederick Nathaniel ‘Toots’ Hibbert passed away peacefully tonight, surrounded by his family,” the statement read.

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“The family and his management team would like to thank the medical teams and professionals for their care and diligence, and ask that you respect their privacy during their time of grief.

“Mr. Hibbert is survived by his wife 0f 39 years, Miss D, and his seven 0f eight children.”

While the cause of his death is yet to be disclosed, it is understood that Hilbert’s demise comes after he had been tested for the coronavirus in the last two weeks and was put into an intensive care unit.

He is credited to have popularised reggae music and even naming the genre, with his 1968 single ‘Do the Reggay’ the first song to use the term. He is also known for tracks such as ‘Pressure Drop’, ‘Sweet and Dandy’, and ’54-46 That’s My Number’.

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Tributes have been pouring in for the late music icon as words of his death spread.

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“The legendary Toots Hibbert has passed. I spoke w/him a few wks ago told him how much I loved him,” Ziggy Marley, son of Bob Marley, a late reggae icon, wrote.

“We laughed & shared our mutual respect. He was a father figure to me his spirit is w/us his music fills us w/his energy I will never forget him RIP MIGHTY & POWERFUL NYAH FYAH BALL”



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